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Media Software Linux

An Interview With the Developers of FFmpeg 80

Posted by kdawson
from the in-media-res dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Following the long-awaited release of FFmpeg 0.5, Phoronix has conducted an interview with three FFmpeg developers (Diego Biurrun, Baptiste Coudurier, and Robert Swain) about this project's recent release. In this interview they talk about moving to a 3/6-month release cycle, the criteria for version 1.0, Blu-Ray support on Linux, OpenCL and GPGPU acceleration, multi-threading FFmpeg, video APIs, their own video codecs, and legal challenges they have run into."
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An Interview With the Developers of FFmpeg

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  • Re:Long Awaited? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by salahx (100975) on Friday March 13, 2009 @01:19PM (#27182975)

    Don't confuse ffmpeg with libavcodec. Although libavcodec is part of of the ffmpeg distribution, and is used by many other program (mplayer especially), ffmpeg is more than that.

  • Re:VDPAU sounds cool (Score:2, Interesting)

    by nerdguy0 (101358) <lwalkera@ieCOFFEEee.org minus caffeine> on Friday March 13, 2009 @01:41PM (#27183317)
    Take a look at this article [phoronix.com] linked to in TFA. Seems like a pretty big boost.
  • Re:VDPAU sounds cool (Score:5, Interesting)

    by limaxray (1292094) on Friday March 13, 2009 @01:52PM (#27183467) Homepage
    It works VERY well. Decoding a 1080p H.264 video using software on my dual-core 3GHz machine pegs the cores back and forth to around 80-90%, but plays fairly well. Using an mplayer build patched to support VDPAU, my CPU remains idle (clock drops to 1GHz, and 1-3% CPU usage) and plays equally as well, if not better. Furthermore, I was still able to go about my business with no noticeable impact on performance, even when using hardware-dependent Compiz. I have not though, tried this on multiple streams.

    Oh, and this is using some cheap NVidia 8600 something-or-other card that I picked up new for ~$50. I, for one, was truly impressed by VDPAU and what it means for low-cost HD content.
  • by Clarious (1177725) on Friday March 13, 2009 @02:39PM (#27184143)

    Pretty good, you can easily decode 1080p H264 video with a cheap nvidia card. It is also consume less power and cooler than using CPU for decoding, so VDPAU = great for HD video on laptop.

    I also find it interesting that VDPAU can help decoding H264 video that I can't decode using its counterpart on Windows (DxVA) :)

  • Legal Issues? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Paul Slocum (598127) on Friday March 13, 2009 @04:11PM (#27185503) Homepage Journal
    In the "Legal Issues" section of the article, I expected to see something about the issue of FFMPEG potentially infringing on existing patents. Instead there's just some stuff about violating the GPL. Seems like a major oversight to me.

    What *is* up with the patent issue? Is it possible to use FFMPEG legally in commercial software if you adhere to the GPL and buy licenses for the patents that you're using? Since I already paid for software that includes encoders for some of these patented codecs, does that allow me to legally use FFMPEG? In my lifetime, how many times do I have to pay the patent fees for MPEG2 encoding?
  • Re:Legal Issues? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by HTH NE1 (675604) on Friday March 13, 2009 @08:22PM (#27188693)

    In the "Legal Issues" section of the article, I expected to see something about the issue of FFMPEG potentially infringing on existing patents. Instead there's just some stuff about violating the GPL. Seems like a major oversight to me.

    So that's not why I can't get ffmpeg to strip the "Copy once" broadcast flag out of my HD recording of 24 "Day 7: 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM"?

    I can hear all the audio, but I can't see anything other than the cable-inserted ads. VLC will play it but not transcode it. MPEG Streamclip will rip the audio but not the video. Mencode with copy and copy fails. Mplayer saving to tga files works but takes up too much disk space and QuickTime Player doesn't offer converting an image sequence to video at 59.97 fps.

    I just want to convert the 1280x720p MPEG-TS signal to 720x480p anamorphic DV video for editing in Final Cut Pro and mastering with DVD Studio Pro.

    I'm going to have to use the analog hole to get this one, and that means it'll be interlaced in SD instead of progressive. And I'll have to catch up with the series before watching it.

  • Re:Legal Issues? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by HTH NE1 (675604) on Saturday March 14, 2009 @01:21AM (#27190351)

    If it were encrypted, VLC and MPlayer would not be able to play it, but they can and do.

    But ffmpeg not knowing about the flag would explain why it wouldn't strip what it didn't know about. Not sure why Mencoder would choke with an audio complaint trying to do the same thing.

    Hasn't anyone created a filter that just clears the broadcast flag from a recorded transport stream? If I had that then MPEG Streamclip would handle everything else for me.

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